[MUD-Dev] Community feeling (was: To good to be TRUE, in an MMPORPG?)

Ola Fosheim Grøstad <olag@ifi.uio.no> Ola Fosheim Grøstad <olag@ifi.uio.no>
Tue Jul 31 13:48:59 New Zealand Standard Time 2001


"Koster, Raph" wrote:

> I'd be curious to hear you elaborate on this. I don't know why
> people assume it's better in theory (any more than why people
> assume bigger worlds are better)

Because it helps marketing a lot? :) "this is not a toy world, it is
a real world".

> I inherently distrust the concept of virtual apartments, rather
> than actual houses on the land, because they are less conducive to
> neighborhoods, in my mind. Less odds of bumping into a neighbor,
> less odds of seeing a house and getting curious about who lives
> there, far less ability to express yourself to a passerby and
> thereby catch their attention.

But in order to achieve this in the nomadic system you either need
teleport-like functionality or a non-2D map.  Both creating
undesirable effects for world perception.

Unless you want Gipsy caravans.  Could be fun.  Used to be the way
to travel too...  Moving settlements helping each other through
"death valley" hmm.  Guess it could work in a game that
allows/forces you to own "movable" factories and such.

> Of course, they also recently announced a feature to actually let
> you toggle off other players on screen. :)

I believe it was said to be a temporary fix to increase framerate in
cities.

>> Despite EQ's flaws, and my tendancy to play 'solo', I rarely
>> experienced this feeling...
 
> Even as a solo player in EQ, you are constantly bumping into other
> players who want the same things that you do, or who have
> something you want.

Then again, EQ players that switch/consider to switch to AO seem to
say they do it because of that and lack of downtime. Even if they
actually prefer the EQ game system..? My impression anyway.

The basic problem is probably that all these games try to cater to
everybody without diversifying resources. A class based system can
in theory support very different play styles, but seldom do. Even
when designers manage to separate resources they fail to provide
different play styles. Fighting and healing is typically the same
game, just with different targets... :(

In AO the basic design seems to be to get money from missions and
experience points from teaming, but it is probably not visible
enough. (If I were them then I would've put time caps on missions,
but with so many character slots...) I believe missions were
specifically meant for short sessions, 20-30 minutes.  IMO a good
thing that developers try to think in terms of shorter sessions.
Still, some quests are far away...

--
Ola  -  http://www.notam.uio.no/~olagr/


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